The father of one of the best middle school players in the city sent the following email in response to the Cultural Short Comings Blog. His child travels to Dallas and Houston regularly and is widely considered one of the best middle school players in the state. She routinely plays up in competition. His comments reflect those of many parents and coaches. How can we try to catch up and in his case, keep his daughter among the elite players for her age in the state, if the local culture prohibits excellence? His thoughts follow:
Just last week after my daughters(name omitted) volleyball team got the beat down from their rival, she commented to her middle school coach that she could not wait for basketball season because she’s going to score 100 on them. Her coach told her that she would not allow her to score that much and in fact she will be limited to 20 pts per game this year. This is the same coaching staff that made her shoot left handed in the 2nd half of games last year thinking she could not shoot left handed. But because she was just as effective going left as she was going right that soon turned into don’t shoot at all in the 2nd half.
You have players putting in tons of time and effort in the gym, only to be held back by the Cultural Short Comings of “fill in the blank” ISD. This attitude disgusts me to no end because come their junior and senior years we will drive to the Frank Erwin Center and serve little Katy, Adriana, and Destiny up to Dallas and expect them to compete….and that’s only if we get them passed Austin / Pflugerville.
You’ve got the whole SA caravan rolling up to the Frank Erwin Center, taking theirs seats in the “Somebody’s Gotta Rep Region IV” section holding up signs of encouragement and screaming to the girls to Go Get‘em! Then Desoto, Plano, Mansfield, Rockwall, Dunbar and the like hit the floor for pre-game warm-ups…….GAME OVER!
While in middle school why not allow little Destiny, Katy, and Adriana to play their game? I believe in doing so they inspire both their teammates and opponents to raise their own games.
Now I’m not saying allowing a girl to score 100 points in a middle school game is the solution, well actually I am. Heck, let her play the way she’s been trained to play, besides we all know she can’t actually score 100. Would we ask a goalie to put her hands at her side in soccer, instruct an outside hitter to intentionally spike it into the net, or tell the cross country runner to allow the pack to catch her at the finish? NO we would not!
So lets not make the basketball player do things on the court that are completely opposite of what she’s been conditioned to do through hours and hours of physical drills and mental training. You can’t play a season with watered down game then try to raise it the day before you go to take on Dallas. It just don’t work like that.